Yes, it's true... Dave Hunchak, Swift Current Broncos Assistant Coach for the last three seasons is now the Head Coach of the Moose Jaw Warriors.
As I type this, the news conference is underway at the Heritage Inn. Hunch takes over from Interim coach Rene Lemaire who replaced Steve Young near the end of the regular season.
He'll do great with the Warriors and is excited to be getting the opportunity to be the man for a Western Hockey League team.
The hardest part of my job is holding onto a story at the request of the teams involved because it completely goes against your instincts as a reporter. I respected their wishes but it's awful tough to see other sources reporting the news earlier in the day. In fact, it drive me nuts!
We talked earlier about the move down the TransCanada Highway. Here's a rundown of that conversation:
JK: I know this was an opportunity you've been looking to do for awhile now.....
DH: I've said all along if the right opportunity came along and I felt it was right for myself and my family we would certainly look at it. It's a day of mixed emotions, I'm very proud of the direction we've been able to get the Broncos going in. I've been treated extremely well by Dean Chynoweth and by the Broncos organization and of course the people of Swift Current. So it's bittersweet in some senses but obviously very excited about the opportunity.
JK: When you look at Moose Jaw the team returns a good nucleus of players especially at the forward position, are you confident you can get that team to perform?
DH: I think number one, you have to evaluate what that team is. Until you get into camp, until you see exactly what every individual is capable of I think you kind of hold back on what type of systems you want to implement. I have certain way in my mind of what I want to do. Once we name our assistant/associate coach we'll have to sit down and figure out what exactly we have to do make the most success out of the group of players that are there.
JK: How tough is it to leave Swift Current?
DH: It's tough. Myself, and my wife and kids have created a lot of good friendships here, none greater than my relationship with Dean and the Broncos. Dean has treated me exceptionally well, he's a well respected man in and out of the hockey circles. He treats his people very well, he looks after them, a good example is the Hockey Canada aspect he's been able to get me involved in. The most important thing is that I consider him a very good friend.
JK: What about the players you leave behind here? You've worked very close with them over the years.
DH: Absolutely, it's a tremendous group of kids the Broncos have assembled here. They are a group that care and are passionate and love playing in Swift Current. They're eager to learn and that's taken a long time to get there looking back to August of 2004. I'm excited for the kids in Swift Current, for them to be able to progress forward in their careers. It'll be interesting to coach against them knowing their strengths and possibly what some of their weaknesses are, again it should be interesting.
JK: You'll be back here a lot as a division rival with Moose Jaw, that will be some interesting match-ups next season between the two clubs....
DH: It really hasn't crossed my mind but now that you mention it, yeah it's going to fun and interesting and something I'll look forward to and I'm sure Dean and the Broncos will look forward to. It'll be exciting, that's part of the entertainment part of the game that is very important. I'm sure the fans in both cities will look forward to those match-ups.
It's tough to see Hunch go but I was expecting this announcement ever since the season ended and it comes as no surprise to me. He was excellent to work with and always made sure everyone was taken care of on the road. We all had some good times together as a team and will always have some great stories to look back on over the three years. It'll be interesting interviewing him as the opposition coach.
He was always a fan favorite...some thought he may coach this team one day. While that doesn't look likely for the coming years, maybe down the road he will return. Bronco fans I want to hear from you... tell me what you think of today's news.
The first battle between the two sides won't take long to commence. We tee it up tomorrow morning at the Chinook in a game I've already billed as a Swifty versus Moose Jaw affair.
I fielded a ton of inquiries this morning regarding this and couldn't say a lot for obvious reasons. I talked to Dean Chynoweth earlier today. I'll have a post on that conversation later. I guess the search for a new assistant coach begins shortly.
So long Hunch, and thanks.
Broncos 17 year-old forward Geordie Wudrick is off to Calgary the first week in August to try and make Canada's Under 18 team. In total 20 players from the WHL were invited. Also making the cut was Jordan Mistelbacher who the Broncos traded to Everett to acquire Eric Doyle.
CANADA UNDER-18 SELECTION CAMP ROSTER
# Player S/C Ht Wt Birthdate Hometown/Country 2006 - 2007 Team
Jeff BoschL/ 6'1 175 01/23/1990 Martensville, SK, CAN Saskatoon /SK MAAA
Peter Delmas L/ 6'1 165 02/16/1990 Bedford, NS, CAN Lewiston Maineiacs/QMJHL
Jacob DeSerres L/ 6'1 184 03/18/1990 Calgary, AB, CAN Seattle Thunderbirds/WHL
Kevin Poulin L/ 6'1 202 04/12/1990 Montreal, QC, CAN Victoriaville Tigres/QMJHL
Jared Cowen R/ 6'5 207 01/25/1991 Allan, SK, CAN Spokane Chiefs/WHL
Tyler Cuma L/ 6'1 175 01/19/1990 Bowmanville, ON, CAN Ottawa 67's/OHL
Michael D'Orazio R/ 6'0 199 08/16/1990 Richmond Hill, ON, CAN Owen Sound Attack/OHL Michael Del Zotto L/ 5'11 200 06/24/1990 Stouffville, ON, CAN Oshawa Generals/OHL
Shawn Lalonde L/ 6'1 175 03/10/1990 Orleans, ON, CAN Belleville Bulls/OHL
Alex Pietrangelo R/ 6'3 206 01/18/1990 King City, ON, CAN Mississauga Ice Dogs/OHL
Colby Robak L/ 6'2 185 04/24/1990 Gilbery Plains, MB, CAN Brandon Wheatkings/WHL
Yann Sauvé L/ 6'3 210 02/18/1990 Rigaud, QC, CAN Saint John Sea Dogs/QMJHL
Michael Stone R/ 6'2 189 06/07/1990 Winnipeg, MB, CAN Calgary Hitman/WHL
Blaine Tendler L/ 5'11 206 02/21/1990 Viceroy, SK, CAN Prince Albert Raiders/WHL
Colten Teubert R/ 6'3 181 03/08/1990 White Rock, BC, CAN Regina Pats/WHL
Teigan Zahn L/ 6'1 193 01/04/1990 Bethune, SK, CAN Saskatoon Blades/WHL
Kyle Beach R/ 6'3 182 01/13/1990 Kelowna, BC, CAN Everett Silvertips/WHL
Lance Bouma L/ 6'0 194 03/25/1990 Provost, AB, CAN Vancouver Giants/WHL
Jimmy Bubnick R/ 6'0 180 01/19/1991 Saskatoon, SK, CAN Saskatoon/SK MAAA
Jordan Caron L/ 6'2 194 11/02/1990 Sayabec, QC, CAN Rimouski Océanic/QMJHL
Joël Champagne L/ 6'3 205 01/24/1990 LaSalle, QC, CAN Chicoutimi Saguenéens/QMJHL
Joe Colborne L/ 6'3 175 01/30/1990 Calgary, AB, CAN Camrose Kodiaks/AJHL
Patrice Comier L/ 6'1 195 06/14/1990 Moncton, NB, CAN Rimouski Océanic/QMJHL
Phillipe Cornet L/ 5'11 175 03/28/1990 Val d'Or, QC, CAN Rimouski Océanic/QMJHL
Chris Doyle L/ 6'0 195 03/22/1990 Charlottetown, PE, CAN P.E.I Rocket
Gabriel Dumont R/ 5'9 160 10/06/1990 Dégélis, QC, CAN Rivière-du-Loup /MAAA
Jordan Eberle R/ 5'10 162 05/15/1990 Calgary, AB, CAN Regina Pats/WHL
Jordan Hickmott R/ 6'1 180 04/11/1990 Mission, BC, CAN Medicine Hat Tigers/WHL
Cody Hodgson R/ 5'11 182 02/18/1990 Markham, ON, CAN Brampton Battalion/OHL
Dale Hunt R/ 6'0 200 01/04/1990 Sanford, MB, CAN Prince George Cougars/WHL
Nazem Kadri L/ 5'11 164 10/06/1990 London, ON, CAN Kitchener Rangers/OHL
Kevin King L/ 6'0 198 01/14/1990 Calgary, AB, CAN Kootenay Ice/WHL
Brandon McMillan L/ 5'10 192 03/22/1990 Delta, BC, CAN Kelowna Rockets/WHL
Jordan Mistelbacher L/ 6'1 190 01/11/1990 Winnipeg, MB, CAN Winnipeg Saints/MJHL
Kyle St. Denis R/ 5'7 160 03/06/1990 Trail, BC, CAN Vernon Vipers/BCHL
Steven Stamkos R/ 6'0 178 02/07/1990 Unionville, ON, CAN Sarina Sting/OHL
Kelsey Tessier R/ 5'9 163 01/16/1990 Fredericton, NB, CAN Quebec Remparts/QMHL
David Toews R/ 5'11 185 06/07/1990 Winnipeg, MB, CAN Shattuck St. Mary's/USHS
James Wright L/ 6'2 174 03/24/1990 Saskatoon, SK, CAN Vancouver Giants/WHL
Geordie Wudrick L/ 6'2 198 04/09/1990 Abbotsford, BC,Swift CurrentBroncos/WHL
WMBL FINES AND SUSPENSIONS ANNOUNCED:
The Commissioner of the WMBL is very disappointed to have to announce the following suspensions. The Commissioner feels that this type of action does not bode well for the entire league and hopes that there will be no further types of suspensions for the entire season. The league is coming down harshly on the players involved and hopes to let all the rest of the league know that this type of action will not be tolerated. These suspensions are the result of a league game on June 9th between the Regina Red Sox and the Saskatoon Yellowjackets.
Both teams have been fined $250 for their benches coming onto the field. The following players have been suspended for their actions either before or during the altercation between the teams: Nic Hansen and Ty Abshire of the Red Sox are both suspended for four(4) games. Joel Cardinal of the Yellowjackets is suspended for two(2) games and Cody Cotter is suspended for five(5) games. Both teams have been warned about any further activities and Commissioner Keith Jorgensen indicates that this incident will be put to rest.
The situation erupted when Cody Cotter after a warning threw another ball into the Regina Dugout during warm-up in the eighth inning. Cotter was quoted as saying to his third baseman after the warning, "Watch this one!". The Regina players reacted and came out onto the field where punches were thrown between the teams. Such action will not be tolerated in this league and it is hoped that with the severity of the suspensions and fines that others will realize that this will be dealt with severely.
It is regret that we have to deal with such issues in this league as this does nothing as far as promotion of good baseball is concerned. Our league should be setting higher standards than this and it is hoped that this will be the last action seen of this nature.